Berlin is the capital of Germany with 3,52 million inhabitants by 2015 (Berlin-Brandenburg, 2016). It is the largest city in Germany and after the Brexit also the largest city in the European Union. The city of Berlin is the target of population migration from home and abroad. It is expected that Berlin will reach 3,88 million inhabitants in 2025 and 3,92 million by 2030 (Berlin, 2019). The population density is quite high with 4 067 inhabitants/km² and densities of up to 10 000 inhabitants/km² can be observed in some inner city districts. The surrounding Federal State of Brandenburg has only 2,48 million inhabitants and is characterized by a rather low population density (84 cap/km²). Some rural areas (Prignitz, Uckermark) are very sparsely populated (31-39 inhabitants/km²).

3.72 million


891,8 km²


4 171

inhabitants / km²


Berlin has very limited agricultural land, which is uneven distributed. Due to missing product variety cultivated nearby and missing logistic and processing capacities, the share of regional products is small and varies between the food groups (between 80% for milk and below 10% for fruits and beef). Therefore, a number of institutions and organisations are aiming at a transition towards a more sustainable metropolitan food system, including short supply chains and closing resource cycles.

926 kg

total food consumption
per capita / year

93 kg

plant-based products consumption
per capita / year

83 kg

meat products consumption
per capita / year

3 832 ha

agricultural land

4,3 %

agricultural land share to the total land


There are two water supply companies in Berlin, which maintain ten water extraction plants (among them eight in Berlin, two outside). The water is extracted to 89% in Berlin, 11% comes from other Federal States (among them Brandenburg). In 2016 around 221 mio m³ water were extracted or imported. Drinking water is extracted from groundwater and shore filtration within the city limits through 650 deep wells within water protection areas. Due to the high-water table and the extensive surface waters is the region is not very prone to water shortages.

115 litres

daily water consumption per capita

66,6 m³/a

water consumption / cap

42,7 m³/a

household water consumption / cap

Water use in households

  • Cooking / drinking 5% 5%
  • Personal hygiene 40% 40%
  • Toilet 31% 31%
  • Cleaning 14% 14%
  • Garden / other 10% 10%


Electric power in Berlin is mainly generated through coal and gas power plants (mainly in power-heat coupling). Renewable energy production (wind, solar energy, bioenergy, from bio-waste) plays only a very minor role (less 4%), most likely for electricity supply. Berlin has only limited possibilities to produce electricity and heat from renewable energies itself. Currently the main focus in the production of energy from renewable sources is on solar energy and biomass.

65,5 TWh

final energy consumption

Final energy consumption by energy source

  • Mineral oil 40% 40%
  • Gas 22% 22%
  • Electricity 20% 20%
  • Renewable energy 2% 2%
  • District Heating 16% 16%
  • Brown coal 0% 0%

Primary energy consumption of renewable energies

  • Solar Energy 3% 3%
  • Biomass 67% 67%
  • Biofuels 24% 24%
  • Wind energy 1% 1%
  • Environment heat 5% 5%